Marketers often fail to take advantage of the opportunity presented by SMS marketing because they don’t fully understand it. Text Marketing myths are stopping a lot of businesses fully utilising this powerful Marketing channel. Don’t be one of those businesses! The fact Text Marketing isn’t widely used yet means there will no better time to get on-board than right now!
Common Text Marketing Myths & Misconceptions
1. Lack of expertise
The first perceived barrier to opt-in SMS marketing is a debilitating one in terms of kickstarting a campaign – many marketing departments simply don’t know where to start. As a result, too many businesses are sitting on the fence when it comes to mobile messaging – losing out on real marketing benefits due to a lack of expertise.
In a recent survey by Textlocal and Mobile Marketing Magazine, 25.7% of UK businesses admit to never using any form of mobile marketing, with 42 per cent using it only occasionally.
Yet the fact is that SMS marketing is much more accessible than you’d think. The SMS format means that creatively it’s a question of sharp copywriting and thinking outside the box when it comes to maximising your messages within the confines of the 612 characters. Technologically, the model is simple – and working with a knowledgable, experienced partner, brands can implement an SMS campaign in a matter of hours.
Marketers often believe that SMS marketing is expensive to set up – after all, it’s a relatively new channel and can’t be done without the help from a third-party such as Textlocal.
However, solutions are available that allow for self-service campaign set up, and messages can be sent for as little as 2.4p. The model is infinitely scale-able to your campaigns can be scaled as your customer base expands. And with the kinds of response rates possible with a skillfully implemented campaign, it only takes a little investment to go a long way in terms of results.
A new form of digital marketing brings a new set of worries around the issue of privacy. Marketers sometimes feel that SMS and mobile in general is a privacy minefield. However, privacy in SMS marketing can work in the marketer’s favour, because it’s all about obtaining your customers’ permission.
It stands to reason then that customers that grant permission for you to communicate with them via SMS are expressing an active interest in your brands goods or services – making SMS an incredibly receptive channel.
4. Big brand bias
Mobile, with its perceived focus on high-tech smartphones and apps, is often seen by grass roots marketers as the exclusive plaything of big brands. Sure, Coca-Cola says mobile is its number one marketing channel but that’s to do with embracing the right channel for its market rather than the size of the business.
SMEs often feel that they should leave expensive mobile campaigns to the sponsors of worldwide events and multinational advertisers, while sticking with the direct mail and online marketing that has served them well enough in the past.
But this attitude is a huge opportunity missed. The personal relationship between the consumer and their mobile phone makes it ideal for local businesses looking to leverage and reward their most loyal customers. And the kinds of response rates associated with SMS marketing means communicating with a modest group of customers can result in a considerable boost to sales – after all, it costs just £2 to send a campaign to your 50 most loyal customers. It’s hyper local VIP marketing, and consumers respond accordingly.
Marketers are often reluctant to use SMS because they fear it is too intrusive a channel – and that customers will resent the brand for getting in touch via mobile.
However, the opposite is true according to a recent study by mobileSQUARED research, carried out for Velti. The study found that 45% of UK consumers are willing to receive branded communications via mobile. Text marketing is a great way to engage with them!
The evidence indicates that consumers love interacting with brands on mobile – clearly, the smart brands out there will leverage this opportunity.
6. Sales overkill
Some marketers believe that SMS marketing is a clunky, primitive way to sell to consumers. However, this comes back to the idea of thinking creatively about how SMS can be used.
According to the Textlocal/Mobile Marketing survey, the most common use for mobile marketing in the UK is for sending personalised confirmations and alerts (50%), with sales and promotions following closely behind (49%). These can be hugely effective. However, there are many other areas that SMS marketing can serve your brand.
Lead generation could be a huge area for SMS in a cleverly implemented campaign. SMS could also be used to link to mobile websites – extending the 160 character limitation associated with the SMS, and allowing for a more creative campaign.
Want some great ideas to make the most out of your SMS campaigns? Check out our Free guide “Can You Outsmart the Competition with Mobile Messaging”